Saturday, November 7, 2015

Basketball Season Again

     Basketball season is among us once again.  A time of year we spend picking up kids from practice, spending countless hours at games and getting home late week nights, living on concession stand food, and dealing with victory and defeat. For a Basketball coach's wife it's the time of year we gain numerous kids in addition to our own, sport our favorite coach's team colors, share our husband with many other women , and men , lol. Our children share their dad with many other kids even when they need him at home. Our coach spends countless hours in the gym and at games and his time at home watching game films, going over plays, talking on the phone about games past and games to come.  Not to mention hubby and wife time is spent with me standing in as a ball player as he goes through plays :) It is a form of foreplay so to speak haha. I cannot tell you how many nights I have spent standing in as my coach's post player, etc. Trust me when I say those hours have been spent way more than sit down family dinners or date nights! Date nights are game nights.
     Love him or hate him, one would be absolutely flabbergasted to know what all my coach knows about the sport. He has studied it and still studies it as I studied nursing, or one studies accounting, medical, or management.  He is not only a coach, but an ear to listen to his players, a father figure for those without, just as he was for my oldest, a social worker, a nurse, but most of all a hardcore, nose to the grindstone basketball coach! He expects the most out of his team and expects the whole unit to work as one. He is tough and very passionate about his work. I do not like a plethora of things about being married to a coach, I'm not the best coach's wife by far, but the one thing that I do love, admire, and respect is his love for the game. I've seen it time and time again players that adore him, look up to him, and even hate him. Every child that I know that mentioned not liking my coach always by season's end, and in two instances, the players decided once my coach was done coaching them that they loved and respected him. I've sat and witnessed him help children from past teams get scholarships and continue to assist them any way he can. I've seen countless tweets to his buddy Jamal Crawford of the Clippers asking questions about my coach and Jamal answering truthfully that my coach was an inspiration and mentor to him! Wimp Sanderson calls him occasionally to say hello. That says a lot about what type of player and team mate he was to coach Sanderson. I admire his dedication to his passion.  But most of all I respect and admire how he followed his lifelong and childhood dreams.  To me, that's what makes him so knowledgeable is he had times he wasn't played much, his times he improved, and he worked at all spare hours, all year around to improve, and then he had the times he experienced the excitement, but also the pressure, of being the star.  The highly recruited all American High school basketball elite! I have a file folder full of recruitment letters from every college I could think of.  You seriously cannot imagine, I couldn't, until you see them for yourself!  I questioned him on the subject of WHY? Why of all these schools did he choose LITTLE ROCK ARKANSAS?? He was very direct and passionate about telling me he always wanted to play for Wimp.  So he has played rec ball, junior high ball, varsity ball, college ball, and played pro ball over seas.  So this is what makes him an awesome, yet very tough, coach! He has been there and done that in every possible situation. Since he could walk he was on the court following one of the best coaches.  His father HL. So many do not always understand or agree but trust me, I've seen it time and time again, once the team buys in and does what he asks, they WIN! It takes a couple of years usually to succeed to the level he would like to when you take over a new program, but mark my word he will win! He will produce college ball players! Most importantly those kids learn, "hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard." His favorite quote! 
     Just this week I had a child that he coached that left MSHS after he did and played for Winfield. This child plays at Shelton State along with 2 of his other former players.   I commented on Facebook, on a post that Ryan's mother posted how proud she was of her son. How excited she was to watch him play ball at Shelton this season.  This child was friends with my son, he is one of the many boys, between both of my sons' friends that call me Mum, and I commented on her post.  "I am so proud I know you are!" She replies to my comment "thank you your husband had very much to do with Ryan's basketball success!"  Warms my heart! My proudest moment was in the past we had a troubled child on a team. He didn't care about school or anything much, stayed in trouble.  My coach never gave up on him and told him he cared for him deeply and about his well being and knew he had potential! That child loves my coach still and that child stayed in school, played his heart out all season!! 
    My coach loves the game, loves the kids, admires the parents for pushing their kids and not allowing them to quit, and I believe, it's his calling.  Never in my life, prior to meeting my coach, who also coached one of my boys, and cut one of my boys, would have just as many books on basketball as I had through basics and nursing school! There's a method to his madness and him and his team will succeed and reach goals set! Wait and see 😏 
    In the meantime I will be here to hear the stories you never will, share his concerns and excitement, comfort him in defeat, and see the tears for any of his players pain! 
     Now let's play some basketball! Go hard or go home! Go Bulldogs!!!! I'm pulling for my favorite coach forever and always :) 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Like I Did Today



I've never felt heartache 
Like I felt today
While looking at my little girls as they were told
Their daddy had gone away
Not for the moment 
       But gone to stay
       Gone to heaven to work the big lights
        In the sky
      To be the scenic designer for the
        Lord forever by and by


I've never felt heartache
Like I felt today
Looking at my daddy
As his mother slipped away
I wanted to take the pain
From him and consume it for my own
But I could do nothing more but for him
        Other than stay strong
Ive never felt heartache
Like I did today
When looking at brothers face
As he laid his baby girl
In her final resting place
My heart was heavy but there was nothing I could do or say
Nothing to take his  pain away........

I've never felt heartache like I did today
As my mothers face was stoic and sad
As she laid to rest, her best friend, her dad
I could tell although I was only a mere 8 years old
My mother I once knew
Was now gone
A piece of her died along with grandpa too
I always tried to remind her, in some ways
I am here for you
But too young to be much comfort
Or help ease her pain
My heart broke for her again and again

I've never felt heartache
Like I did today
When he told me
He didn't feel the same
My best friend , love of my life
No longer wanted me
As his wife
I thought this too shall pass as all my troubles had
Just like the last
But the hurt was a feeling I've never felt before
As I turned to walk out  the door
He did not follow me
Or ask me to stay
I suffered my first broken heart that day

I've never felt heartache
Like I felt today
When I looked at my doctor as he told me of my fate
I have to stay strong
Just as I always have
Be strong
To help my mother along
But ironically my plan suddenly changed
As I was told that she and I suffer from the same
I am a Phoenix, a Titan they say
But I felt helpless and defeated on that day
He does not give us more than we can take
But lord I cannot take anymore weight
I want some of  my burden to be lifted from my being
No more tradgedy I am pleading
I know I am strong
But I'm growing tired and weary
And the burdens become a struggle upon my shoulders
I used to move mountains
Now only boulders


Denna Dionne

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Today

                                   Today

Today is your day you enter the real world not as a boy but as a man.
But like I've always told you time and time again
No matter how old you get you're always mommy's little man.
So as usual I have plenty to say and advice to give, 
If I may.
Always look ahead to the goals you desire to dream
Set them realistically so they are possible to achieve.
This keeps you striving because you avoid letting yourself down,
Because that's who you have to lean on
When no one else is around.
After reaching one you set to achieve another,
Always remember these wise words from your mother.
When your goals are reached the adventure has just about to begin,
And during your travels you will rise and fall again and again.
Some days are tough and some hardest of all,
But today I want you to know I will catch you when you fall.
When the world can be cruel and mean just know that it happens to all us and deal with it clever and keen.
Our outlook and poise during the times we get knocked down,
Determine how we continue,
Just tune out all the noise
Today I give you a gift to last your whole life through
Don't let people interrupt your path to yourself stay true.
Be kind to everyone no matter their worth or looks because
Some of the most valuable people you will meet don't fit in or go by the books.
Treasure your family because you're true shelter they are
They are always here for you no matter where you go or how far.
Today I remind you of what I hoped you learned from words I spoke that didn't mean anything then 
But when circumstance pushes you will hear them time and time again.
Smile at strangers and be kind to the poor
Don't break anyone's heart intentionally because broken wings make it impossible to soar.
Take my lessons and remember them don't make mistakes as mine
But know any choices I made seemed right at the time
Be loyal to your friends and family for some don't have any
But also just ignore and don't waste time on you're enemies.
Treat women like a lady never treat one mean or unkind
Don't break people's trust because it's hard to get back for quiet sometime.
Enjoy life because we only have one
This also means be smart and think before you act my son
Today you start a whole New chapter in life
Its full of surprise, success, and strife 
God blessed you with more than you know at this time
And he blessed me with you sweet child of mine.
So Today put on that crooked littke grin that will probably get you out of as much trouble
As it gets you in.
Today I watch my baby walk across that stage
And start life starting a new page.
I hope I loved you enough for you to make your way
 as I let go of My baby and welcome my young man today
Today I won't cry because although you've grown-up 
You will hopefully never grow apart because today I want you to know 
That you are a quarter of my heart.
It isn't whole without you in it
So today you start life
Be in it to win it.
Happy Graduation
I love you Blake 
Mom

Saturday, January 17, 2015

From the Coach's Wife's Desk

 I sit here thinking, contemplating on even publishing my excerpt during the season where we have such victory yet defeat.  Defeat in fans, parents, fair weather friends, and even issues at home when the HOME team needs the coach and the "HOME" TEAM needs the coach as well.  I'm often asked to cross my Ts and dot my Is check myself and remember where I am from before I speak. My head coach prefers for me let things roll and take it with a grain of salt, ignore it, and leave my witty sarcasm out of my discussion.  Then I remember that so many times as a single mom and dad, a hospice nurse, a patient who awoke from a coma scared, a rehab patient who became friends with her therapists, a person with so much physical and emotional pain, a person burdened with Narcolepsy and Cataplexy and multiple sclerosis, and a person that  has been on every socio-economic level from making fine as a single woman, to losing weight working 2-3 jobs to feed my kids, to the person everyone Sat with just because of who I was at the time, back to homeless and hungry due to working myself to death as a single mother and not having the choice to stop or to rest.  After remembering all of that and realizing this is why give had the same friends a lifetime, why I was the trauma and ortho docs favorite yet most sarcastic patient, why my mom who lives far away and my step dad are bored when I return home after a visit, why friends know I will be truthful, and always admit what I said.  Also why people know there aren't skeletons in my personal closet because I am not ashamed and pull them out myself so you have nothing to say.  It takes the fun out of talking about people when they have already spilled the beans lol.  Then I read  the name on my blog. I realize I can say whatever I want. In my blog I am the head coach this is MY HOME COURT, Like real life my players are my readers :) some are on board with my game some aren't. And just like readers have the choice to read another blog, players have a choice to play for another team, simple. I have no pity for ones that say impossible. I attended a high school which I adored and wanted My kids to attend the same. My oldest was an outstanding basketball player and did not make the team at my large and prestigious alma mater. As a parent, I don't assume my child should make teams, make all-star, and definitely start on a team.  Once my son was used for one purpose and it was not that I knew he was capable of so much more but HE KNEW...he was repeatedly brought off the bench to shoot his mean 3 and put the team back ahead. What a chore for a mere sophomore who adored playing B team because all He wanted to do was play but he did it. No qurstions, no whining to me for he knew my reply.  I moved him from my alma mater across to another town were this is exactly what the coach did with him. My child was a minority at that HS but like I always told him....there is no place to belly ache you wanna compete? Dig in and earn that spot put in extra time at the gym....mission accomplished, however the situation remained the same.  Some would have pulled the race card or put it all over MySpace lol.  Going to play for the blue map, after my child always being called in to dig the team out of the hole, didn't get in hardly at all if at all. With the student section screaming "put Barnes in!"
I assured my son he helped them get there,chin up. It wasn't til after this team got kicked out of basketball camp twice for fighting or stealing that my son chose not to play with these type people any longer.  He said he was not playing and verbalized that this school in his credentials may hinder him from attending the very college they were stirring up a ruckus.  I knew his love of the game so I switched schools once more to a small county school on a mountain top that didn't stand a chance.....of course my kid was the star and took them to victory many Times. However the other side of that is another son awesome at football but loved basketball also and looked up to his brother. Now this brings me to my entire reason for this blog.
     I have an issue with my coach being accused of playing children lucky enough to be born to certain parents, living a certain lifestyle, or being wealthy. Because first of all, my entire household believes a kid has nothing, their parents may, the child however doesn't have one red cent. Money does not win ballgames. Of course except in the NBA when you practically "buy" the best players :D okay now that we are clear on that let me sarcastically paint another picture for those who don't understand ..... I was taught better by my all American mom and dad who taught me to work and work harder, no handouts and nothing worth having is free.....I hate not everyone is taught this growing up. I'm sorry for that, really.  What wins games in high school is just the simple remedy of talent + hard work + strategy + some God given natural talent + knowing your opponent + desire to win, and like him or not,  just some Damn good coaching. They don't teach the real coaching tactics in college. Its experience, having been there. It is a "calling." I can rest easy knowing that when my coach stands before God he will have plenty to discuss after fulfilling his purpose :) Not once has he questioned it or tried to rebuke his calling. I will never forget the anger and hurt I have felt in the past with my coach being accused of being biased, prejudice, or favoring anyone, and the best....and most humorous ......trying to please certain parents.  Lets revert back to my football player that LOVES basketball. HE just happen to be the age where my coach was the head coach and was holding tryouts.  So proud of my coaching tactics and skills.....wait I mean parenting skills.My son said how nice and easy if I were automatically on the team because of " who I am but I know I got to hustle and I also know I'm not quiet the player as some of my peers," how mature.  Well my coach aka husband cut this child, my child, how dare he, how could this be?? Know why cause He needs to WIN. WINNING KEEPS HIM EMPLOYED AND FOOD IN MY FAMILY'S MOUTH, A ROOF OVER OUR HEADS, THE POSSIBILITY OF MY DAUGHTERS GRADUATING FROM A SCHOOL THEY ADORE, and remaining happy for the first time since losing their biological father a little over a year ago.  It means I continue medical treatments for my illness.   This coach is coaching more than just a game on the court.  I am sick at times and need a coach myself, but mine is coaching elsewhere.  Many days of collapsing, spasms, pain.....I want MY coach here coaching to keep me at the level I am and not worse.  He's coaching his life passion but yet coaching my girls way of hopefully remaining in one place. When they cry about a father gone and need the one here known as daddy also, he is busy with others' children.  So I get horrifically offended by the selfish, childish, comments made before realizing that court and that gym is only a small fraction of my coach's life.
     I wish I had a dollar for every hurt feeling, sad and happy one, every regret he has because the game got so intense that his intentions are lost, and for every tear I've seen him shed for what a player may be going through that he shares with his coach, my coach. I would be wealthy, wealthier than I am in witnessing it first hand.
     Last, when my coach is slandered, verbally or on social media, I have to wonder, what are you teaching your kids? Its ok to gossip, point fingers, or even cyber bully? I can tell you it is the exact message that is being sent.  I fail miserably at messages I send my kids time and time again. Because although I come from a family and a school that exemplifies class I am still me. I have a short fuse and the desire to defend my family with the fight of a tiger. As a young mother 25 years ago I had been known to take it outside or ask one to take a seat or I would gladly show you to your seat.  But not until the verbal attack on my kids became physical or intimidating or vulgar to my cubs.   Like TNT.... I had a very hard time teaching my kids that education, class, knowledge is triumphant over temper when mine is so short,  no tolerance for BS, immaturity,drama, bullying, stupidity, etc.....but I met a coach.  He taught me that extra part of class I was lacking. That part where it's ok to be bossy, sarcastic, witty, and stand up for myself and my kids, my family and friends, and what I believe in.  He taught me that even though a majority of my views are legit and right on.....not all of them are and it is ok to think other people's views are just as legit in their homes
     In closing, before you hide behind social media or a church door or a cell phone, camera, whatever your poison, know that my baby girls hear things and their feelings have been hurt and for that reason it became my business! But without the sarcasm or the things I would like to say I will close in a thank you. Thanks coach for teaching me things later in life, things my poor parents never could enforce because I was then an adult out on my own and allowed so many obstacles and triumph to make me hard. Thanks for instilling the piece of class I lacked, of walking away at times as opposed to wasting my breath that falls onto deaf ears.  Thanks for constantly butting your head against a brick wall called stubbornness when trying to have your sweet compassion rub off on me and for teaching Me sweet revenge and being a mastermind revenge queen wasn't sweet after all.  Off the record thanks for staying with me through my wreck,coma, and long rehab when we thought I may not walk.......thanks for asking for my hand, love you BIG.  YOU didn't have to saying as you came into our lives only four months prior to that day. Thanks for coaching and loving us through.  Most of all thanks for loving me the assistant coach, even though here is my court, my team, my way.......
     And as for the lovers and the haters. Team is team and every player matters. My coach finally instilled this in my boys who always said who cares if we win a ring if I never play......
I knew this when my youngest boy, the one who didn't make my coach's team, in good spirits says...during and intense time playing football for MSHS says " our WINNING football dynasty is only as good as the scout team!!!" haha love it. And such truth  from such a young man.  With that said I think an awesome bunch of kids are learning what winning feels like!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Who We Are

This is part 1 of blog sessions I am calling 
Crossover:  The Coach's Wife's Guide for   The Coach On and Off the Court :D 

Who is the coach's wife? Let me start by saying we are people and spectators of the sport, a human, a mother, a daughter, a wife, we just happen to be married to the coach. We work in a different field than out coach yet raise our children alone a majority of the time and still keep the house in order and support our favorite coach. 
     What do we want? I can only speak for some of the wives I've met throughout my being drafted by our coaching hubbies but I am not shy to speak up. 
First of all, what we want from the general public is easy, simple treat people how you want to be treated Golden Rule.      Please don't judge me on my appearance or the fact I try overly hard to get to know you or make sure everyone knows I'm the new coach's wife. Also on the other side and as for myself, please don't judge me because I seem snotty or unapproachable just because I keep to myself and am not overly involved.  Some people are more comfy in the spotlight and are so utterly proud of her coaching spouse they seem to be all over the place and everyone's bestie.  The rest of us are perfectly content just introducing ourselves as ourselves not the coach's wife.  We lose our own identity through the process of being teamed up with a coach so never expect me to say I am the coach's wife until after I've used my name :)  because not only am I Justin,Blake, Baylee, and Gabby's mom, I am Debbie's daughter and Billy's youngest, Mike's sister, and so and so' sold hospice nurse, I am also known as ......yep "the coach's wife." 
     We want respect not to bash the man we love within hearing distance. We love our loud coach just as you love your banker, accountant, preacher, iron worker, doctor, lawyer, etc etc.  How would you react to one of us bashing your spouse and talking about his piss poor job when there is no way I can do his job?  Correct it would not be pleasant.....so I ask for understanding and forgiveness when I react the same way! Also we ask get know us for us. Don't eat me up to my face because I am the coach's wife, I have no pull with my coach if your son is picked for his team or gets cut.....NONE!  He cut our own child the second day of tryouts so that's no necessary.  Do not dislike us because you dislike our coach. We are not the coach and have no control over his temper when he feels his team could give more or when he feels the referee is cheating his team.  Do not judge me on his performance and avoid me during losing streaks or when your child doesn't play as much as you think they should.  And don't act as though I'm a personal best friend during winning seasons and when your child is the star player.  That will only start rumors about us both from the prior one because our friendship is why your child starts.  No again my own child my own flesh and blood got cut!  I have no say in who is on the coach's team! 
     And last for now, do NOT for one moment think that when the game is over and everyone goes home that I get my love back.......because I don't! He replays the game over and over until he is ready for bed.  During the off season he works behind the scenes trying to make the program better to inspire young athletes to give 100%.  Don't get angry when he scolds a child because he scolds mine twice as bad and it's for the same reasons not doing your part or doing your best or simply not doing what your told!! And please don't expect wins all the time and judge his ability on the record! He is teaching your child more than just ball, he or she may not know it yet but later will realize what he learned from my coaching hubby.  Never doubt my coach's feelings for his players for your kids are the topic of conversations at my house or over dinner when we have our own kids.  Your child's needs and interest get met often before our own.  Not because it's his job....know that it's his job because it's his calling, his passion, his Love for the game! 
XXOO